The streets of Pacifica are among the worst, least navigable in the entire region according to the Metropolitan Transportation Commission. Adam Pardee / Tribune

Data from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission puts Pacifica at the very bottom of the Bay Area for pavement conditions.

The city’s 2019 “pavement condition index” gives the city a score of 46 out of 100, in the “poor” range. That is the lowest in the Bay Area, which overall has a score of 67, said Lisa Petersen, director of public works for the city. Pacifica’s optimum number would be 85, Petersen said.

Pacifica’s score went down from 53 in 2017 and 48 in 2018.

And that isn’t even the bad news. About $3.5 million a year will be needed to maintain the current score, she said. However, only $1.4 million a year will be spent every year for the next five years in accordance with the City Council-approved street paving program. The result will drop the PCI to 41, she said.

The money to pay for repairs will come from funds dedicated for that purpose from Measures A and W and Senate Bill 1. At the end of five years, 27 miles of streets will be improved.

“Reasons for the city’s low PCI include the acquisition of incorrectly constructed county streets when Pacifica was incorporated and low investment levels due to years of city revenue growth not keeping pace with city expenditure growth,” she said.  

The street paving work and sidewalks will be done by neighborhood for efficiency.

“City Council accepted a five-year street maintenance plan with a ‘stopgap’ cape seal treatment to treat suitable residential and collector streets in the poorer condition categories to stop further pavement deterioration on these streets,” she said. “The program would also continue to maintain streets in the better condition categories to prevent them from falling into more expensive repair categories.

“The end result will be more than 100 streets treated over the five-year period,” Petersen said. 

City Council approved an agreement to pay $86,250 for a Pavement Utility Cut and Vehicle Impact Fee Study. NCE Consultants will look into whether large trucks are responsible for street pavement failures and how to develop a potential fee to charge the utilities and construction companies that might be causing wear and tear on the streets. The city’s gas tax maintenance fund has $197,500 in it to pay this consultant.

To improve the index score, new revenue sources must be found, city leaders say. Those possibilities are expected to be discussed at the next City Council goal study session, Petersen said.

One potential idea is to develop strategies through “Vision 2025,” said Peterson.

“The more complicated and larger revenue generating funding strategies for street maintenance will be components of the Vision 2025 scope of work and evaluated within the context of Pacifica’s numerous financial sustainability issues,” she said.

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